Jazz Aviation LP, a subsidiary of Chorus Aviation, will be the first operator of the Dash 8-400 Simplified Package Freighter, developed by De Havilland Aircraft of Canada. Re-configuration of aircraft was recently approved by Transport Canada to support the airlift of freight during the COVID-19 pandemic. The aircraft will also be operated by Air Canada through its freight division Air Canada Cargo.
Under the agreement, Jazz has ordered the Service Bulletin and conversion kits for up to 13 Dash 8-400 aircraft. De Havilland Canada will be the exclusive supplier of all future Dash 8-400 Simplified Package Freighter modifications for Jazz’s fleet.
“We are delighted to be the first operator for the Dash 8-400 Simplified Package Freighter and congratulate De Havilland Canada and Transport Canada on offering this sound solution,” said Randolph deGooyer, president, Jazz Aviation LP. “This innovative opportunity will allow us to redeploy aircraft while contributing to the collective fight against COVID-19 by supporting our customer – Air Canada – and the delivery of essential cargo.”
The reconfigured aircraft holds the potential to carry a payload of up to 17,960 lbs in the passenger cabin and belly. Tim Strauss, VP of Air Canada Cargo, explains the converted cabin, which can accommodate a cargo volume of 1,150 cubic feet, is well suited for loose load cargo like medical supplies, PPE and other goods needed to support the fight against COVID-19.
“This aircraft will allow us to provide critical cargo lift on short and medium-haul routes that have been impacted by the reduction of passenger flights,” said Strauss.
Todd Young, COO of De Havilland Canada, explains the reconfiguration of Dash 8-400 aircraft into Simplified Package Freighters can be quickly achieved by the removal of seats and seat track covers in the passenger cabin, with the use of up to 17 cargo nets.
“We will work with Jazz to quickly put their Dash 8-400 Simplified Package Freighters into service and look forward to supplying this solution to other Dash 8-400 aircraft operators around the world to assist in the re-deployment of their fleets to meet the growing demand for airlift of essential supplies during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Young.